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Did Google Just Place Three Big Bets on Nvidia?


Basically, Nvidia is taking its current PC desktop GPU chipset and is in the process of shrinking it to the size and power requirements of a cell phone. While every chip maker -- including Intel, AMD, Broadcom Broadcom (BRCM) and Qualcomm -- is doing this, Nvidia has a particular combination of strengths that makes for a unique pedigree for accomplishing this task.

Conclusion No. 1: I draw the conclusion that Google is working very closely with Nvidia for a new set of mobile computers - smartphones and tablets -- with dramatically higher computer power, to be announced starting in late 2014. These smartphones and tablets would be more powerful than almost all of today's PCs.


Microsoft and the Xbox: Everyone knows that Microsoft is about to announce a new Xbox, based on fairly "standard" Windows 8.1, X86 architecture and an AMD chip. This would have been a huge deal... five to six years ago.

Today, however, the world of gaming has moved on. Microsoft has sold only approximately 80 million Xboxes in the last decade, so in other words Microsoft has only as many subscribers here as Research In Motion's (BBRY) BlackBerry.

What happened? Well, the iPhone, iPad and Android -- that's what happened. Nowadays, gamers with need for performance, use PCs. These PCs are many times more powerful than a traditional Xbox-style gaming box. At the other side of the spectrum, the new mobile devices are far more convenient than something tethered via a wire to your TV.

The big question everyone has been asking is: How about an Android gaming device, that looks like a gaming controller, and can be used by itself or in conjunction with any PC or TV?

Nvidia has answered this call with the Shield device. You can order it now, and it will ship in June. It's $349. It was prominently featured by Google at i/o this year. Consider this: The only thing Google otherwise had to show, was a Nexus version of the Samsung Galaxy S4.

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